Ahh, October. The month of transition from sunny, muggy weather into crisp, cozy and colourful Autumn. As we kiss the last of Summer goodbye, we welcome this beautiful season that calls for warmth and comfort - warm, cozy sweaters and socks, nourishing teas and soups and quite possibly some immune boosting tonics, to ward off the pesky colds and flus that tend to go around at this time of year. As our external environment shifts, it increases Vata in our internal terrain, and we must in turn adjust our daily routine and diet so they are in harmony with the physical changes around us. But fear not, dear friends, because I have some delicious immune-boosting recipes to keep you warm, nourished and healthy all season long. By living in tune with the natural laws of the season, we can maintain a sense of balance, and are able to build a stronger immune defense system during colder wather!
The first recipe I have to share is a delicious, warming anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting drink that’s a perfect for winding down before bedtime. It’s called Golden Milk, and the star in this drink is turmeric. I love drinking this traditional Ayurvedic drink in the fall in particular because of the warming spices – the cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg combo is heavenly. But in addition, it has numerous proven health benefits. Curcumin, turmeric’s most significant compound, has medicinal properties and is used to reduce joint pain, arthritis, inflammation, and even treat depression. This tea actually maximizes the natural antioxidant power of turmeric because it is served hot and is combined with other beneficial spices and a little bit of fat. In addition, drinking this on a regular basis supports healthy digestion, immune function and liver function as well as fight colds, congestion, headache and sore throats. I encourage you to make it as part of your bedtime routine, as this creamy, comforting drink is made of ingredients that have been shown to promote a good night’s sleep. I hope you will enjoy the Golden Milk as much as I do, and make it part of your everyday ritual.
(makes 2 cups, one for you and one for a friend)
- 2 ¼ cups of nut milk of choice (I prefer unsweetened almond milk)
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric (you can grate it fresh, too if you prefer)
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger (or, fresh grated ginger for a bolder flavour)
- A pinch of nutmeg
- 1 tbsp extra virgin coconut oil
- 1 tablespoon raw, unpasteurized honey or maple syrup, or 10 drops of stevia (depending on your taste)
- A dash of vanilla extract (optional)
- A pinch of black pepper
- Heat the milk slowly on a low-medium heat in a saucepan on the stovetop.
- As it’s heating, add the spices, coconut oil, vanilla extract and honey.
- Stir to combine all the ingredients until they are well incorporated into the milk.
- Bring the milk to a low simmer, about 5 minutes. Once the milk is lightly simmering, turn down the heat and blend it with an immersion blender (or in a regular blender). You don’t want to boil the milk as it might burn.
- Pour into your favourite mug.
- Add the pepper on top (this activates the turmeric and makes it easier to absorb) and add a dash more of cinnamon if you wish.
About the Author.
Sharyn is a Certified Nutritional Practitioner and a Yoga Instructor who is passionate about sharing her holistic wellness knowledge with others. She strongly believes that good health and healing is rooted in the simplest, most natural practices such as; eating real, whole foods, moving our bodies regularly, getting enough sleep, cultivating a mindful meditation practice and spending ample time in nature. Sharyn is the creator of Wild Culture Wellness, a blog dedicated to all things ‘wild & well’. You can find out more about her and get more delicious recipes here and here.